What Is Salvation, And Can You Lose It?
I used to think that it was possible to lose (as in taken away) your salvation. I often used a verse in Revelation that says for those who overcome and endure I will not blot out their names from the Book of Life, as one of my supporting verses to that belief. But I recently asked others to share what they believe concerning salvation...Once saved always saved or is it possible to lose your salvation. There were a lot of great answers, which led me to rethink my position. I still believe we can "lose" our salvation, but now I think it is a matter of perspective. The following will be my attempt to explain just what I mean by that.
First I want to start by clarifying something. Gods reality is not our reality. GOD does not exist in time or space but outside of both. HE is not subject to either. The past and the future are all "Now" to HIM. HE not only knows all that has happened, HE knows all that will happen. There was never a "time" when GOD did not exist because time itself does not exist (where GOD dwells is timeless) for GOD. GOD created time for our benefit. We are subject to the law of time. We are born and we die (or our bodies do anyway). These are both aspects of the law of time. GOD also created laws for man. Laws telling man how to treat each other, how to govern self, and how to worship HIM. Where man sees in shades or gray, GOD sees in black and white. You either obey HIS laws or you don't. You either accept HIS Son or you don't. Since GOD knows the hearts of man better than man himself, and since GOD is always now, regardless of time, HE knows who is sincere and who isn't, who will accept and who will reject HIM. So from GODs perspective, it is impossible to lose our salvation. As I was thinking about this tonight, something came to me. That verse I told you about in the beginning, what if I had misunderstood it? Most everyone who believes in GOD and HIS plan of salvation, know about the Book of Life. It is understood that all will be judged out of this book. It is generally thought that when a person accepts salvation, their name is recorded in this book...But what if that was wrong? What if, instead, EVERY human ever born had their name recorded into this Book of LIFE at the moment of their birth. Consider that children who die before they reach the age of accountability (knowing right from wrong) are automatically saved and return to GOD. When a human reaches the age of accountability, they begin to knowingly choose to do right or wrong. As they live their lives, all they say, think and do is recorded in this Book. On Judgement Day, those who rejected GOD will have their name blotted from out of the Book of Life. And remember that GOD said no one would have an excuse. That means that at some point in EVERY humans life, GOD comes to them and shows HIMSELF to them. Those who reject HIM, do so knowing what the consequences of such a choice will be.
From our perspective, it is possible to lose (as in taken away) our salvation. This is because man does not see the big picture and he cannot see into anothers heart. Man can barely understand his own heart let alone someone elses. There are people who believe they are devoutly following GOD, but according to GOD they are not. They are devoutly following a self made image of GOD. But to those who cannot discern Truth from lies, these people are righteous and obviouslt saved. The trouble starts when one chooses to listen to man, learn from man rather than from GOD. They gather to themselves preachers who tell them what they want to hear.
When we are babies, we can only drink milk. As we grow we are able to eat partially solid foods. When we are mature we are able to eat solid foods. When we first begin our walk with GOD, we are unable to understand or accept the deeper mysteries of GOD, so we get the milk, the basic and easiest to understand information. If we are sincere in our acceptance of GOD and HIS Son, the "older" we get the more we are able to grasp. I liken church to school, specifically grades K-high school. So long as we are drinking milk, and even eating partially solid foods, we need school/church. After every service we come away satisfied, thinking how the sermon seemed meant for us alone. But as we near the end of high school, we begin to yearn for something more. We are no longer satisfied, and our questions are no longer being answered. When we come to this point, it is time for a Higher education, meaning it is time to learn directly from GOD HIMSELF. Once this stage of your walk begins, you start to discover just how much misinformation and how many untruths you have been taught. GOD teaches you HIS Truth, and gives you the ability to discern that truth from the falsehoods being taught in the churches.
People who obey man rather than GOD are not saved. This doesn't mean they never will be, only GOD knows this. But GOD gave us a brain and it is up to us to search out the truth. Most Christians never bother to seek out any truth but what the preacher tells them. The problem with that is preachers only teach what they themselves have been taught...and they were taught by man. So if people believe a lie because they were taught it from one they trusted to teach them truth, can they still be blamed for what they believe? The answer is yes. The KJV Holy Bible is crystal clear in what GOD wants for us and how we are to live and treat each other. If people choose to believe mans interpretation rather than seeking out GODs (the Author) Truth, then they alone are responsible for what becomes of them. When a person sets out to teach about GOD, they better be darn sure what they are teaching is according to GOD and not self wisdom.
Our problem is that we see someone who appears to be a devout follower of GOD in the public eye, but we can't know what goes on behind closed doors. Only GOD knows a mans heart. But we judge by what is visible to us. We see such a person and we say that one is saved. but what if that person watched child porn in the privacy of their home? We see one who appears to be wallowing in sin all the time and judge that one not saved, but who is to say they aren't struggling daily to overcome, or just because they aren't saved today does not mean they won't be tomorrow. Only GOD knows. But you see now how, according to mans perspective, it is possible to lose our salvation? According to man, who can only see the surface of things, a person may appear to reject GOD, when in trutgh they are going through the end of high school and entering into the higher education.
There was a time when I did not understand any of this. I just began to be unsatisfied with what the church was teaching. My questions were no longer being answered. I was yearning for something and I did not know what it was. I started church hopping, and even tried a Universal Church. That church was the last one I ever attended. I even tried looking into other religions. I had my grandmother scared I would turn my back on GOD. But what she could not understand was that GOD was calling me out of the church. HE allowed me to search the other religions because HE knew I belonged to HIM. And no matter what religion I looked into, I always knew GOD was the only Truth. When I was done searching, my higher education began in earnest.
So, to summarize...In GOD's view, once saved always saved. In mans view, it is possible to lose your salvation.